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Coffee, Culture and Change in The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta

Posted by Rick Peyser  |  Mar 22, 2017 10:00:00 AM

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Root Capital board members and staff with the leaders of ANEI, a Fair Trade and organic coffee cooperative in Colombia

In late February, I joined a few members of Root Capital’s staff and fellow Board members in traveling to visit ANEI, a Fair Trade and organic coffee cooperative located in the mountains of northeastern Colombia, the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. The cooperative, which has been a Root Capital client since 2012, has 700 small-scale coffee farming family members from four indigenous groups – the Arhuacos, Koguis, Wiwas, and Kankuamos – each with a distinct language.

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Topics: South America

Peru's Coffeelands: Where Women are Taking Charge

Posted by Will McAneny  |  Mar 7, 2017 5:21:07 PM

Dora Lisa Carrión Gómez

Dora Lisa Carrión Gómez, president of the women's group at the coffee cooperative APROCASSI. 

Businesswoman. Farmer. Community leader. Mother. Most of us would struggle to be any one of those things. Dora Lisa Carrión Gómez? She’s all four.

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Topics: Women in Agriculture, South America

Sparking a Data Revolution in the Peruvian Andes

Posted by Zehra Ijaz  |  Jan 24, 2017 6:00:00 AM

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Using tablet-based technology to conduct farmer-level surveys allows cooperative managers to analyze trends that inform better management decisions. 

In 2014, Root Capital was conducting routine household surveys with farmers in the Peruvian Andes to assess the impact of its work with UNICAFEC, a local coffee cooperative. Noting the tablets and digital surveys used by Root Capital’s research team, Alfredo Alarcón, UNICAFEC’s manager, made a simple request: could Root Capital teach his staff how to use similar technology to perform annual farm inspection audits, a burdensome requirement for organic certification?

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Topics: South America, Root Capital, Advisory Services, Mobile ICT

How this Peruvian Artisan is Running a Business on Her Own Terms

Posted by Will McAneny  |  Oct 12, 2016 11:20:04 AM

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Fany Paty, artisan supplier to Art Atlas, a textile business based in Arequipa, Perú. 

Fany Paty always wanted to run her own business.

Like many entrepreneurs, Fany longed for a job where she could have flexible working hours and a healthy degree of independence. But for Fany, this wasn’t a matter of personal preference. She needed to bring in enough money to provide for her family while still having the time to care for them day-to-day.

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Topics: Women in Agriculture, South America

A Step Towards Peace

Posted by Willy Foote  |  Sep 20, 2016 5:37:08 PM

Two years ago almost to the day, 60 Colombian musicians came together and released a song called “Un Paso Hacia la Paz” (“A Step Toward Peace”). Amid joggling maracas, an impassioned choir of pop stars, indigenous singers, and Vallenato musicians sing, “Así es como canta Colombia por la paz” (“This is how Colombia sings for peace”), urging for an end to the country’s 50-year armed conflict.

Fast-forward to today, and the peace Colombia sings for is finally within reach.

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Topics: Peace & Recovery, South America, Willy Foote

As Demand Grows, It’s Time to Invest in the Future of Coffee

Posted by Matt Foerster  |  Apr 29, 2016 10:41:49 AM

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This year, the world will consume more coffee than ever before. And industry projections point to growing demand in the years ahead, especially in emerging markets. Take China, for example. During its annual investor meeting last month, Starbucks highlighted that it’s opening the equivalent of one new store in China every day. The problem, however, is that this rising global demand for coffee cannot be met with a dwindling supply.

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Topics: Climate Smart Agriculture, South America, Central America, Issue Brief Series